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May 1956

Mecamylamine, a New, Orally Effective,Experimental and Clinical Evaluation

Author Affiliations

Washington, D. C.

From the Cardiovascular Research Laboratory, Georgetown University Hospital, the Department of Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine, and the Veterans Administration Hospital.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1956;97(5):551-561. doi:10.1001/archinte.1956.00250230045005

Stone and his co-workers * have reported recently on certain unusual pharmacological properties of mecamylamine (3-methylaminoisocamphane) hydrochloride. This compound, a secondary amine, produces a marked and prolonged degree of blood pressure reduction and ganglionic blockade in animals. Mecamylamine also is well absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract, the L. D.50 being approximately the same whether the drug is adminished subcutaneously or orally. By contrast, previously successful ganglion-blocking agents, which are tertiary amines, are poorly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. The ratio of oral to subcutaneous hypotensive dosages of the latter drugs in man is approximately 15: 1. †

In patients under treatment with ganglionblocking agents it is possible that some of the difficulties of clinical management, such as irregular fluctuations of blood pressure and gastrointestinal atony, may be due to the poor absorption and, hence, large local accumulations of the previously available compounds in the gastrointestinal tract. It seemed worth while,

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